The Ravenclaw left around half an hour later.
"My books?" I ask the Professor, and he nods, making an aha movement. He slides over to his shelf and picks up a Transfiguration book from there.
"You'll have to ask the rest of your professors for copies of the textbook they are currently using." He tells me and hands me the slightly old copy of the Transfiguration textbook I already had memorized years in the future.
I take it with a slight grimace and open my backpack to shove the textbook beside the other two books I had in there.
"What are those?" Dumbledore asks me, curious. I shut my backpack slowly, so I didn't draw any more attention to them.
"Just some notebooks from the future." I muse, and he nods content with my answer.
"Well, do you want to meet my brother. Classes are over for the day, and you start school tomorrow." He offers and I nod, swinging my backpack on my back.
"Sure. Sounds good." I muse, and he nods.
"Follow me then. We will need to apparate to Hogsmeade." He tells me, and I realize that since he wasn't headmaster anymore, he could no longer apparate in and out of the castle grounds.
I stay silent, not commenting on the matter. I stop in my place, however, staring at Dumbledore gaping.
"Wait! It's almost 1940, right?" I demand and Dumbledore nods.
"Yes, well, it will be in a month." He says.
"Grindlewald is still at large," I state, and my words make Albus cringe.
"Yes." He admits, making me groan.
"Great, I have to deal with two dark wizards now." I snap, and Albus shakes his head.
"No. Grindlewald is my responsibility, not yours." He says in a tone that meant the conversation was not up for debate. Too bad bud, I was debating until I got my damn answers.
"Cause that worked so well in the past. You loved him." I state deadpanned telling it as I saw it. The wizard pales, and I raise a brow at his blatant silence.
"How did you know that?" He asks in a tone higher than a whisper. I roll my eyes and point at myself.
"I'm from the future," I tell the wizard, making him rub his forehead as if getting a massive headache.
I look at him pointedly. "I'm not the one that wanted to go back in time, bud. That's on you." I say in a sickeningly sweet tone.
"Come along, Ms.Dumbledore. I'll take care of Gellert." He tells me, and I scoff.
"First name basis are we." I mock, causing him to glare at me.
We reach the courtyards leading out of the school, and he offers me his elbow as we exit the school. "Hold on tight Valentine." He orders and I nod, reaching out to grip his arm tightly.
He grabs my hand with his other hand, making sure I was secure and then apparates without warning.
I felt my whole body being squeezed, sliced, spinned and skinned alive. I stifle a scream, but all at once, I was on my own two feet, and I was stumbling back in horror.
"Oh my god! That was AWFUL!!!" I heave, trying to control my breathing.
I point at him accusingly. "A WARNING would've been nice!" I demand, and Albus looks amused.
"Albus." A voice snarls behind us. I turn around to come face to face with a man in a light blue apron.
He was a barman and was currently glaring at Albus with such hatred; it made me flinch. He looked similar to his brother in that he had such long, stringy, wiry brown hair and such a long beard.
He wore spectacles that hid a pair of piercing, brilliant blue eyes. .
"Brother," Albus said in a strained voice. I could see the noticeable brotherly resemblance now.
"Who's this?" He snarls, looking at me unimpressed. "Your concubine?" He snarls.
He had a wand aimed at his throat faster than he could blink.
"Say that again; I dare you." I snarl back. He looked at me with something of newfound respect.
"Valentine. Aberforth is mad at me, not you. He was trying to anger me and insulted you in the process." Albus explains, but my lip curls unamused.
"Apologize then." I snap at Albus's brother, who grits his teeth at being ordered around like a child.
"Sincerest apologies, miss." Aberforth demands and I smirk, taking my wand back and placing it back into its place in the folds of my ponytail.
"Valentine, meet your cousin Aberforth. Aberforth, this is Valentine Dumbledore. She's aunt Hornoria's daughter." He informs his brother.
I watch as Aberforth looks between Albus and me, staring at us like we were mental.
"Hornoria never had children, Albus." He tells his brother and Albus shrugs.
"Her story matches up. Hornoria never cared for family. You know this. She left her as a child in a muggle orphanage." He tells Aberforth. Aberforth's eyes soften slightly in pity.
It was true, though.
My parents had died when I was a mere baby, and my sister Petunia hated witches and magic, so she'd put me in an orphanage where I lived there my whole life until Hagrid had come to get me,
.....telling me I was special.
"You're family then?" Aberforth says a glint of hope in his tone. I felt awful lying to him, but I guess the fewer people who knew I was from the future, the better.
"Yeah," I say softly, and a soft smile extends on the man's face.
"I thought the only family I had left was this old arse." Aberforth points at Albus with a hard look. He wraps an arm around me and pulls me back into a one-sided hug.
"Lovely to meet you, cousin." He smiles at me, and I smile back.
"Likewise," I beam, and he looked like he was ten years younger with a smile on his face.
"I can leave you here for a bit, but make sure you come back to school before midnight Valentine," Albus tells me, giving me a look.
"You have class tomorrow, so don't stay out too late," Albus tells us, giving us both meaningful looks.
"I can look after her, Albus. I am not one to back away from responsibility." He sneers at Albus, his words having a double meaning.
Albus doesn't let his words get to him because he gives a slight nod and apparates away. I could see the hint of pain in his eyes, but he had left before I could say anything.
"What was that about?" I ask Aberforth. He looks at me with a pained smile.
"Not to worry, young one, just some bitter resentment between brothers." He tells me. I give him a smile and a pointed look.
"Seemed like much more than mere resentment," I tell him. He gives me shrug, his jaw clenched. I had the feeling that he didn't want to talk about it. He changes the subject just then.
"Put an apron on my dear. Come and help me with some orders." He tells me, handing me a matching blue apron. I put it on and smile at him.
"Okay, sounds fun. You'll have to teach me how, though." I say, and I see him nod in response.
"Just do as I tell you and serve the customers with me, dear." He replies and I do as he said. I took orders, scribbling them down on a notepad as I helped Aberforth make the drinks.
Some were alcoholic, others warm and sweet.
The bar I was working at was small and extraordinarily dirty and filthy as sawdust dusted the entire table.
I found myself getting rags and using water to wipe down the bar, cleaning off the dust.
Even the windows were nearly entirely opaque, and the floor all but invisible beneath the dirt.
Sometime through the evening, I'd grabbed a broom in the corner and started sweeping up the grim and dirt using my wand to clean around the shop.
It looked a hundred times homier after just a bit of work. I used my wand to light up the cold fireplace in the corner and grin at the nicer looking shop.
"Thanks for helping around Val," Aberforth tells me, giving my head a fond pat.
"It was no trouble at all. I enjoyed it, actually." I say, and he smiles at me kindly.
"You are always welcome." He tells me, handing me a warm drink, motioning to sit with him.
"Thank you. I quite like it here." I tell him.
"How did you know you were a Dumbledore?" Aberforth asks, and I smile.
"The orphanage gave me some things my mum left me. Between them was a note that had my full name. So I knew through that." I answer, taking a timid sip of the substance Aberforth had given me.
I realize what was in it the second my taste buds touch it.
It was hot chocolate, but there was a hint of truth serum infused in it.
I silently thanked Snape for being such a strict professor. We were required to know what it tasted like in drinks by the end of second year.
Discretely I spit it back into the mug, as I had it raised acting like I was taking a big sip.
I put it down, wiping my mouth with my sleeve.
"That's good hot chocolate." I lie through my teeth, and he gives me a tense smile.
"Why did you decide to seek us out now?" He asks another question. This was an interrogation. Much like Albus had done with me before.
"I was scared. I didn't have a family before now and thought I didn't need one. All they do is hurt you in the end." I say truthfully, realizing he must've had as hard of a life as I had.
I didn't blame him for the truth serum at all now that I thought about it.
"I almost died last year," I state, thinking back to the basilisk I had helped Ettie and Harry kill. It'd taken a massive chunk out of my arm as I shoved Harry out of the way to save him.
The poison would've killed me if it hadn't been for Fawkes.
"I figured I might as well get to know the last members of my family before I cheated death again." I give a hard laugh. Aberforth was staring at me, analyzing.
He finally relaxes and gives me a soft look.
"It would've been nice to know about you before little one. My sister would've adored you." He thinks back, and I take notice of his usage of past tense.
I meet his eyes, telling him with them that I knew what he was insinuating. He looked relieved. I didn't ask him any further questions.
"What is this place called?" I ask, changing the subject.
Aberforth sighs, looking around at the half-empty tavern. "Hog's Head Inn." He replies. I give a nod.
"How utterly befitting," I say and he gives a hearty laugh causing me to laugh too.
Maybe coming to the past wasn't all bad... maybe, just maybe....I'd learn to love this timeline as much as I'd loved my future one.